Tuesday, July 9, 2013

and then today

Today I flew to Portland, Oregon, with my work buddy, Eileen.  It's time for that annual shindig, the paralegal convention.  Last year, Eileen's first convention, was held in Omaha.  In July.  It was over a hundred degrees mixed with equal parts of humidity.  I thought portions of me might have melted off and disappeared into the hot asphalt.

This time we're in lovely downtown Portland.  Classes in the mornings, afternoons free, so I'm thinking we should drive to the ocean tomorrow and then drive to the international rose test garden on Thursday.  What could be better, right?  Ocean/beach with roses/gardens.  All right here in the most self-sustainable city in the nation.  Perhaps the world.  I'll have to check the brochure to confirm.

The only thing I would change about Portland is the food.  Holy cow are they all about the vegan/vegetarian business.  Eileen, the vegan, has died and gone to heaven.  We ate lunch at a place that had "veggies" in its name, I thought we'd be eating stir fry.  But no, we had fish tacos (pretty good but not sure that was actually fish and not tofu) with chili (again, no meat, just beans and zippiness).  No diet coke to be found in the place.  I asked if there was a cupcake store anywhere nearby and was given directions to a place that our server had been at just last week where she had the best.ever.gluten-free.cupcake to die for with avocado cream frosting--and I had to turn away.  It was all too much healthiness for me.  Can't I just have a german chocolate cupcake?  Or a chocolate chocolate cupcake?  Sprinkles too, please?  Well, no, no I cannot.  So I hit up the little store in the lobby where I picked up a couple of candybars and a couple of diet cokes.

Gurl's gotta do what a gurl's gotta do.

Which reminds me of my last trip to Portland--on a bus in November (?) in a rainstorm with my high school friend, Joey, and our other Future Business Leaders of America.  I don't remember anything about that visit except that we all walked around outside the hotel one night, which seemed a bit sketchy since we didn't know where we were or where we might be going and somehow Dianna Ross was involved in the conversation--maybe from a billboard of her movie, maybe Mahogany?  I also remember deciding to ride the elevator to the top of the hotel only to find out there was a private club on the top floor (that apparently didn't welcome 17-year-olds), which was made clear by the loud male voice speaking to us in a clear Germanish accent:  "YOU VREALIZE OF COURSE DAT YOU ARE NOT ALLOWED ON DISS FLOOR!!!" This announcement caused us to scream a silly little startled scream, punch the elevator button repeatedly, and exit the floor as quickly as possible, giggling all the way down to our own floor.

We still giggle whenever one of us repeats that phrase during a lunch date or over pancakes.

Tomorrow I'm going to get Eileen up there to see what's what.

Today we also walked around our hotel for a while.  We didn't have anyplace in mind to go see, so when I saw a sign that pointed towards a fountain, we headed in that direction.  At first, the only fountains we saw were drinking fountains.  Was this some inside Portlandia joke that we weren't in on?

After a few blocks, we were ready to change directions, but then we saw it--the fountain:

Of course, naked men staring at and reaching for naked women's breasts right in front of an insurance company office.  Okay, maybe that wasn't the fountain.  I couldn't get Eileen to pose for me in front of that one and she didn't want to take pictures of me draped over it either.  So we kept walking.

Next we came upon Portland's own Gallivan Center look-alike and it had this fountain:

We were not sure which fountain deserved its own directions-to-me sign.  They were both equally artistic and impressively waterfull-y. And delightful to stumble upon in the middle of a perfectly lovely weather day.  Portland does get points for weather.  And fountains.  Just not cupcakes or big juicy burgers.  Our search will continue tomorrow.

1 comment:

Johanna said...

Best. Time. Ever.

I remember a little more than you do....I had bronchitis and coughed the whole trip, probably keeping everyone up while we drove all night.

We missed the state championship football game, which MHS won for the first time in something like 100 years. We talked about skipping the Portland trip so we could be there and Miss Payne read us the R-I-O-T act. So glad we didn't. We had a much better time than we could ever have had at some silly championship game.

It was the first time I ever experienced the phenomenon of the water making goblets ring. Miss Payne did not think it too cool that we joined in as the whole banquet room made music. Hey, at least we didn't do the spoon on the nose trick.

I loved Portland and did not feel afraid one little bit. And, do you know, I've never been back. :(

Let me know how that top floor of the hotel works out. I wonder where our German friend went. I do remember that he had a shaved head back before it was so common. I think at that time it was only he, Yul Brynner, and Telly Savalas. :)